We love our long-term clean commuters! They’re in on a secret we’re trying to share with all of metro Atlanta: Ditching the drive-alone commute has long-term benefits for savings, stress levels and work-life balance.
We chatted with Jason Headley, Sean Savoy, Dale Wesson, and Ryan Walker who work in Chick-fil-A’s corporate IT department and have been carpooling together for more than 10 years. Take a look and think about how carpooling could change your work life!
Tell us when you got started carpooling, and why.
Our carpool was started back in 2006 as a result of high gas prices. We were looking for ways to stop spending so much money on gas. Jason Headley emailed several people in the IT department who live in the Newnan area and asked if anyone was interested in carpooling. A core group of five of us has continued carpooling for years. Three of our four guys live in the same neighborhood. The fourth guy drives about ten minutes to meet us each day at 8:00 am. We are back around 5:45-6:00 each day.
What do you like most about your commute?
Personally, I like the social aspect, the ability to bounce ideas off the other guys, and the occasional quiet days.
What benefits have you seen from not driving alone?
Saving money is, by far, the biggest benefit of our carpool to us. (Most of the guys in our carpool have a tendency toward being “cheap.”) We have better work-life balance than we had before carpooling. We are much more likely to leave the office at a consistent time each day. And we have become good friends over the years. You get to know someone pretty well after spending an hour a day with them for ten years. We take time to pray for each other and what is going on in our lives. We have unofficially elected one of our guys to be our “Carpool Chaplain."
What do you do while you carpool?
We talk about our families and what is going on in our lives. We have formed strong friendships over a ten-year period. Sometimes the commute is a quiet ride. We’re all drained from working all day and don’t say much of anything during the commute. Occasionally someone will fall asleep while riding.
A lot of times, one or more guys in our carpool are working during the commute; it’s not unusual to see one or more laptops open. With improvements in technology, we can connect into the office while riding in the car. We also have lots of work discussions or meetings that we just can’t find time for during the work day. Since we all work in the IT department, we can discuss current projects or issues. Carpooling allows us to bounce ideas off one another. It is safe to say the company gets several more hours of productivity from us each week as a direct result of our carpool.
How does this setup sound to you, commuters? Would you like your commute to look more like this one — savings, naps, work-life balance and all? We can help. Take the first step toward finding your own carpool buddies today! Find a ridematch today.
Gentle Alexander, an Atlanta massage therapist and student, has been riding buses since he was 12 years old. A California native, he started navigating metro Atlanta’s bus system 5 years ago as soon as he relocated to metro Atlanta.
“The buses here weren’t what I was used to, but I figured out a way to make it work,” he says.
Now, CCT buses are Gentle’s primary mode of transportation, and he says the past 5 years have brought a lot of improvements to Cobb’s buses: more leg room, tinted windows, and blasting A/C—a special perk when commuting in the Georgia heat.
“Also, the new Cobb buses are shipped from California, so it makes me feel like I’m home.”
Gentle likes to stay calm, cool, and collected, and riding the bus helps. By riding the bus, he’s able to live without a car, which means he keeps his cost of living low.
For Gentle, taking the bus means putting the worry of the road in someone else’s hands. “I don’t have what other people have but I’m happy and enjoying it.”
What could taking transit do for your stress level? We’d like to help you find out. Check out the various transit options that may work for you. And if you need help planning your trip, we’re here for you.